COLOMBO - Irfan Pathan grabbed five wickets as India prepared for the World Twenty20 with a 26-run victory over hosts Sri Lanka in a warm-up match in Colombo on Saturday.
The paceman finished with 5-25 off four overs as India bowled Sri Lanka out for 120 after posting 146-5. He was superbly backed by fast bowler Lakshmipathy Balaji, who took three wickets for 28 runs.
Kumar Sangakkara top scored with 32 for Sri Lanka. India were struggling at 51-4 before skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (55 not out) and Rohit Sharma (37) propped up the innings with a 78-run stand for the fifth wicket.
Dhoni cracked three sixes and four boundaries in his 42-ball knock. India are in Group A with England and Afghanistan while Sri Lanka are in Group C with South Africa and Zimbabwe. The top two teams from each group advance to the Super Eights round. Veteran Brad Hogg helped spin Australia to a 56-run win against New Zealand in a warm-up match ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 on Saturday.
Chasing a total of 140 to win at the Nondescripts Cricket Club Ground in Colombo, the Kiwis made a shaky start and never recovered as they were bowled out for 83 after 17 overs.
Hogg (3-23 off four overs) was the chief destroyer with the ball while Shane Watson (2-7 off three), Patrick Cummins (2-13 off three) and Clint McKay (2-14 off three) also got in on the act.
New Zealand opener Rob Nicol (0) was trapped lbw from the second ball of the innings off the bowling of Watson and when his partner, Martin Guptill (five), departed in the next over, the Kiwis were up against it.
A 31-run partnership between Ross Taylor (22) and Kane Williamson (17) for the fourth wicket looked to have stabilised things before Hogg spun his magic. ­The 41-year-old had Taylor caught by McKay initially before he bowled James Franklin (seven) in the next over.
McKay chipped in with the wicket of Nathan McCullum (two) before Hogg made it three wickets in as many overs, when Williamson was caught by skipper George Bailey.
That reduced New Zealand to 59-7 and Tim Southee (five), Ronnie Hira (six), Adam Milne (four) all fell late in the piece as they fell well short of Australia's target.
Earlier, Watson (27) and David Warner (24) got Australia off to a fast start. New Zealand spinner Daniel Vettori (1-26 off four) removed Warner and Michael Hussey (five), Cameron White (eight) and Bailey (three) all fell cheaply shortly after. But the late hitting of Glenn Maxwell (24 off 27 balls) and Matthew Wade (25 not out) helped Australia to a total that proved too much for their opponents. Milne (2-27 off four) and Doug Bracewell (2-31 off four) impressed with the ball for the Kiwis.
Australia are in Group B with the West Indies and Ireland, while New Zealand are in Group D with Pakistan and Bangladesh. Bangladesh beat Zimbabwe by five wickets, chasing their victory target of 135 with five wickets in hand and 10 balls to spare. M Ashraful (38) and Ziaur Rahman (26 not out) got Bangladesh over the line, while Afghanistan beat Sri Lanka A by 51 runs.
Afghanistan beat Sri Lanka A: M Nabi (51) and Asghar Stanikzai (50) helped the winners to a score of 7-209 before Dawlat Zadran (3-22) led the way with the ball as Sri Lanka A were bowled out for 158.